Categories: "Living"

Jury Assembly Room

04/18/05 | by JAdP | Categories: Personal Life

I'm now at the jury assembly room at the San Mateo Superior Court in Redwood City. I should have brought my laptop, as they now have WiFi down here. But no cell signal in the "dungeon" as the guards called it; the jury assembly room is in the basement.

Full security is in place, empty your pockets and go through the metal detector. Bags, cases, etc. go through x-ray. I didn't see anyone take off their shoes though. The prospective juror in front of me for the security check has a metal knee [in her own words], but they dealt with it expeditiously.

So, with no cell signal, and without my laptop, how am I blogging? The court system nicely has provided Gateway Profile [computer in the monitor] systems - about a dozen of them. And they are all in use.

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Jury Duty

04/18/05 | by JAdP | Categories: Personal Life

I have Jury Duty.

Everyone receiving a notice must show up. That's the first time that's happened to me in a long time. For the past several years, only a range of juror numbers were activated, and rarely was mine in the range.

I've never actually served on a jury. I've either not had to show, or been sent home after sitting in the waiting area all day.

The one time I was called into a court room, I knew the plaintiff, and all the named defendants. A woman I had known for years, a retired restauranteur on the Coast was suing all the doctors on the coast over complications from a medical procedure. A rather personal medical procedure that I really didn't want to know about. :lalala: She had actually cared for my house the previous week while I was away. :D

I was called into the juror's box for the preliminary vetting. I looked over to the plaintiff and said "Hi Sally". She looked up and said "Hi Joseph, how's everything?". The judge said "dismissed". :>>

Remember the old movie based on Dicken's A Tale of Two Cities? Remember the old woman sitting, knitting and cackling "guillotine, guillotine"? That should quell any enthusiasm for selection as a juror.

I'm not really sure that I believe in the current incarnation of the jury system in the US. Originally, the idea was to have a jury of the defendant's peers, to balance strict interpretation of the law with human emotion and knowledge of the specifics. Jurors were from the community, and like me in Sally's case, knew the folks involved and maybe even the circumstances surrounding the case. Now a jury is to be impartial, and decide only on the facts of the case in accordance with the law as explained to them. What rubbish! The jurors aren't familiar with the law, or the internal logic of the legal framework, which often defies common sense. It often seems to me as a perfect set up for misinterpretation and nonsense.

Ah well, we'll see what the day brings. I'll make sure that my Palm and mobile are fully charged... maybe I can blog from the court. &#59;)


Emerging Opportunities in Open Source Technologies

04/16/05 | by JAdP | Categories: Business Life, Open Source

Clarise and I had the opportunity to attend The Leadership Forum and University of California Club of Santa Clara County (a Cal Alumni Association Chartered Club) presenting an evening seminar: "Emerging Opportunities in Open Source Technologies"

Moderator: Raj Rao, Former VP Program Management & Operations,
Peoplesoft (Former Sr. VP Product Management &
Marketing, BroadVision)
Speakers: Bernard Golden, CEO, Navica
Mark Towfig, VP Engineering, NexTag
Date: Wednesday April 13, 2005

The perspective demonstrated by Mark Towfig on his company's use of open source struck a chord with me. It was very reminiscent of the corporate attitude that has IT departments build all their software rather than buy packages. Like a Fortune 500 company for which we did a data warehouse in 1999 building a large, unwiedly and unworkable inventory management and order fulfillment tool using Pick Basic and a Universe database in 1998, when Dr. Pick died in 1985.

It seems there are now three types of IT corporate cultures, build, buy or modify Open Source. I pointed this out during the first speaker's [Bernard Golden] talk. Oddly enough, Towfig had that statement on a slide as the new choices facing companies. But he didn't recognize it as a corporate culture, until I asked the question. It's a new thought.

Are there now three types of IT cultures? Is modification of open source projects becoming an established way of doing business, right up there with build and buy. The other choice, outsource or "offsource" was never mentioned. But it some ways, that is a separate decision. Software as a Service versus buying software licenses is also a separate decision.

Overall, the speakers were interesting. The subject certainly is. Unfortunately, the discussion during the presentations was so engaging that the panel discussion was canned. That's a shame. I had several questions that I was saving up. But I'll blog about those another time.


Blogging and Localization

04/03/05 | by JAdP | Categories: TIA Life, Science and Technology

Localization through the use of meta data defining from where the blog or individual post is being written, or, if more to the point, a locale that is the subject of a blog post, makes a lot of sense. Even when blogging for business purposes, there is a personal aspect to blogging, and 'tis always good to know who your neighbors are.

This may be even more important for mobile and wireless blogging (moblogs). Whether a modern day wiki(Tocqueville,Alexis de Tocqueville) chronicling political opinions along with your travels, or a realtor blogging about a new listing, being able to tag your posts with pertinent location information is very valuable.

Several services have been created to ease the blogger's task in adding localization. Some use GeoCode tags taken from RFID that can be added to any post, and some use meta tags that must be in the Head information of a web page. Generally, I prefer the ones based on GeoCodes. First, it's easier to have multiple blogs that share the same theme, skin or wiki(blogware) to have different localization tags. Second, these allow individual posts to be tagged with different locations. Both types of tags can work with longitude and latitude, or with other types of location data such as City and Country. Some services can help you find the longitude and latitude for a street address.

We first added a Blogmap to our "About" section of our blogs several weeks ago. You can see that the TeleInterActive Lifestyle, Yackity Blog Blog and Cynosural Blog come from three different, though close locales. It works fairly well, but sometimes slows the load time for our blogs to an unacceptable level.

Another service is Blogmapper, run by the mapbureau which offers a way to add full maps to blogs. They show some very cool examples on their site.

Here's examples of the embedded tags:

geo:lat> 37.56295 /geo:lat>
geo:long> -122.50167 /geo:long>

Here's examples of the meta tags:

meta name="ICBM" content="XXX.XXXXX, XXX.XXXXX">
meta name="DC.title" content="THE NAME OF YOUR SITE">


META NAME="geo.position" CONTENT="latitude; longitude">
META NAME="geo.placename" CONTENT="Place Name">
META NAME="geo.region" CONTENT="Country Subdivision Code">

Other localization services that use meta tags are as follows.

  • GeoURL
  • GeoTags
  • Getty Foundation uses another type of tags, using a different set of Meta data based on their own ID system, as shown in the final example.

meta name="" content="ID#" />
ID: 2012778
Record Type: administrative
Hierarchy of Montara (inhabited place) Montara (inhabited place)
Lat: 37 32 00 N degrees minutes Lat: 37.5333 decimal degrees
Long: 122 30 00 W degrees minutes Long: -122.5000 decimal degrees
ID: 2012832
Record Type: administrative
Hierarchy of Moss Beach (inhabited place) Moss Beach (inhabited place)
Lat: 37 31 00 N degrees minutes Lat: 37.5167 decimal degrees
Long: 122 30 00 W degrees minutes Long: -122.5000 decimal degrees
ID: 2013175
Record Type: administrative
Hierarchy of Pacifica (inhabited place) Pacifica (inhabited place)
Lat: 37 36 00 N degrees minutes Lat: 37.6000 decimal degrees
Long: 122 29 00 W degrees minutes Long: -122.4833 decimal degrees


Modern Man Meets the Source of His Food

03/29/05 | by JAdP | Categories: Living the Life, Personal Life

There is nothing like fresh dungeness crab bought right from the boat in Princeton Harbor.

Our good friend [and corporate attorney] makes the trek to the coast every so often to meet with us. And this time, he wanted to buy some fresh crab after we had lunch at Mezzaluna. As we walked down the pier, checking out the whiteboards that would tell us which boats were selling, you could see on his face the dawning realization: "fresh off the boat" means LIVE CRAB.

Words really can't convey how much fun we had as the fisherman explained proper handling and cooking techniques, how to assure that the crabs wouldn't throw a claw [A defense mechanism they have to escape when a halibut has bitten down on a claw] while he deftly selected two crabs, each weighing about 2 pounds, threw them into a plastic bag and handed them to our friend, warning him not to loose a finger. And then handed us two more bags, as "those two fellows will likely poke some holes in the bag".

We gave even more advice on the ride home. :p But all's well that ends well, for back in the East Bay, to quote his after supper email...

"I must say, however, that it was a bit out of the beginning of "The Last of the Mohicans" with my 'thanking my brothers for giving their lives for me....' And the meal was delicious."

This is the most I've laughed since before the accident of two weeks ago. It was a great day of crab hunting.


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I'm Joseph A. di Paolantonio and this blog has two main foci: my interest in food, and my interest in the future. This provides a look into my personal life, and is separate from my consulting work…though there will be overlap. I am an independent researcher, working as a strategic consultant and I'm an executive with over 20 years of commercial experience with a technical interest in the intersection of Internet of Things, with advanced data management and analysis methods. I view data science as a team activity, and I feel that the IoT must be viewed as a system. I am leveraging my past activities to understand the adoption and impact of the IoT; first, as a system engineer in aerospace, where I developed Bayesian risk assessment methods for systems within the Space Transportation System (including the Space Shuttle), Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer, Gravity Probe B, and many more, and second, as a enterprise data warehousing, business intelligence and analytics professional. Between my aerospace and IT careers, I indulged my hobby of cooking by starting a food company, Montara Magic, centered around my chocolate sauces. My education combined chemistry, mathematics and philosophy. I performed research into molten salt fuel cells in graduate school, and in photovoltaic materials for a short time in industry. The lure of bringing the human race into space was strong, and when I was offered the chance to combine my chemistry and mathematics skills to develop new risk assessment and system engineering methods for space launch and propulsion systems – I couldn't resist. I perform independent research and strategic consulting to bring value from the Internet of Things, Sensor Analytics Ecosystems and data science teams.I am a caregiver, a lover of science fiction and speculative fantasy, and my passion to learn has led me to a pilot's license, an assistant instructor in SCUBA, nordic and alpine skiing, sea kayaking, and reading everything I can, in as many topics as I can.

View Joseph di Paolantonio's profile on LinkedIn

37.652951177164 -122.490877706959


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